Week in week out, Premier League holds its breath to see if Leicester and Tottenham can continue their march towards an unlikely title win this season. Gameweek 30 saw Foxes and Spurs take on relegation struggling sides.
Prior to the kick-off, many pundits were keen to observe the performance from Claudio Ranieri and Mauricio Pochettino’s teams. As expected, they struggled to play their expansive brand of football, but still managed to get the job done.
Leicester had more of a difficult tie against Rafa Benitez’s resurgent Newcastle, and it showed with a second half which was dominated by the Magpies. However, Shinji Okazaki’s spectacular overhead kick had given Leicester a first half lead, which they defended with great character and application.
Leicester have played on the counter attack all season. And when Newcastle allowed them time over the ball, few had hoped to see Ranieri’s players adopt a different style to alter Newcastle’s tactics, but they did.
Danny Drinkwater and N’Golo Kante kept the ball among themselves and allowed the likes of Riyad Mahrez, Jamie Vardy and Marc Albrighton to go and influence the game. And when it needed a moment of brilliance to unlock the game, Okazaki came up with an amazing goal.
The win took Leicester 5 points clear of Spurs, who had earlier closed the gap to 2 points after their win vs. Aston Villa. Speaking of Spurs, they looked way off their game against the worst side in the league this season.
It took Harry Kane to see his team through with two goals on the night. Kane took his tally to 19 goals for the season, but more than that, it highlighted Tottenham’s ability win games even when they are not playing well, which is hallmark of a Champion side.
Over the years, Manchester United established themselves as the Champions even when they had an off day. Sir Alex Ferguson’s side were blessed with some high quality players, who were capable of winning games on their own.
Pochettino’s Spurs showed similar qualities vs. Villa, and went a step closer to emulating Manchester United’s feat from yesteryear. Both Leicester and Tottenham went on to win the games despite not playing their natural game.
That is precisely why, they deserve to win this season’s title more than Arsenal, Manchester City or any other team in the league. It would indeed be a fairy tale end for one of the two sides involved in the most epic Premier League title race of all time.
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